Tuesday, November 1, 2011
Programs rely on juco transfers to succeed
By ESPN.com staff
For every junior college player who experiences high-level success at a Division I school, ESPN.com's Jason King writes, there are hundreds who don't. Marquette and Buzz Williams have found the right formula with juco transfers, and other programs are hoping to emulate the Golden Eagles' success this season.
Juco Transfers In The Spotlight
Jason King takes a look at some junior college transfer players who could make an impact on the court this season.
• Dewayne Dedmon, USC -- The 7-footer didn't play organized basketball until his senior year of high school. He has a huge upside and is already being mentioned as a future NBA draft pick by Trojans coach Kevin O'Neill. Dedmon can play center, power forward and even small forward.
• Sam Grooms, Oklahoma -- The speedy point guard should start immediately for the Sooners, who are rebuilding under new coach Lon Kruger. Grooms is a North Carolina native who starred for tradition-rich Chipola (Fla.) Junior College.
• Moussa Gueye, Alabama -- At 7-0 and 280 pounds, Gueye could become an immediate presence for a Crimson Tide squad that should be as good as it's been in years. He chose Alabama over Indiana, USC and Texas following a stint at Lake Land (Ill.) College.
• Pierre Jackson, Baylor -- Jackson earned national junior college player of the year honors after leading the College of Southern Idaho to the NJCAA title last spring. He could be the missing piece for a Bears squad that underachieved last season because of a weak perimeter.
• Jeremy Jones, Kansas State -- The Chicago native averaged 18.5 points and 4.6 assists for Seward County (Kan.) Community College last season. Jones, though, faces a mammoth chore in replacing guard Jacob Pullen, one of the top players in Kansas State history.
• Nurideen Lindsey, St. John's -- A Philadelphia native, Lindsey averaged 38 points as a high school junior and spent three years away from basketball following the murder of his younger brother and the death of his close friend to cancer. He spent last season at Redlands Community College in El Reno, Okla.
• Cheikh Mbodj, Cincinnati -- Bearcats coach Mick Cronin is hoping Mbodj and all-conference candidate Yancy Gates will form one of the Big East's most intimidating frontcourts. Mbodj averaged 14.6 points and 7.6 boards last season for Grayson (Texas) Community College.
• Tyrus McGee, Iowa State -- The 6-2 guard made 115 3-pointers last season for Cowley County (Kan.) Community College. He'll team with Chris Allen and Scott Christopherson to form one of the nation's best long-range-shooting backcourts.
• De'End Parker, UCLA -- Parker is a combo guard who averaged 13 points and eight assists last season for City College of San Francisco. He originally committed to Cal but was needed more at UCLA, where the Bruins were shocked by the departure of Malcolm Lee to the NBA draft.
• Stan Simpson, Memphis -- The Tigers were thin in the paint before the arrival of Simpson, a 6-10, 235-pounder who was the ninth-ranked junior college prospect in the country at John A. Logan College in Illinois.